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the five stages of the new job September 3, 2009

Posted by That Guy in Getting Hired.
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Beware the giddy employee, because the giddy employee (these days, anyway) is either high on caffeine from that supercharged coffee in the break room or he just got a new job.

The five stages of the new job:

Everyone feels like this when they get the call for the new job. (CC-licensed photo by orphanjones)

Everyone feels like this when they get the call for the new job. (CC-licensed photo by orphanjones)

1. Giddiness: There’s very little like the adrenaline rush of taking a phone call on your personal cell from a recruiter — whose name and number are in your contacts, naturally — and hearing those four words: you got the job. Your heart leaps; your palms tingle; your vision might even blur for a second. And then, as you leave your desk to discuss the particulars, the only thing on your mind is I can’t wait to start telling people!

2. Leakage: This refers to the slight let-down after you leave your desk, go somewhere private, and discuss the particulars of the new position. What’s the pay rate? When do they want you to start? Contract or perm? Paperwork? Insurance? Retirement? Negotiation for better pay or benefits? As you discuss these things with your recruiter (or the company who’s hiring you, but these days almost everyone’s using recruiters), you start to feel a slightl let-down. You’re still ecstatic, but you’re starting to be realistic about how much work is ahead of you in your final days at your current job.

3. Spousal Abuse: No, not the kind that is deplorable. I’m talking about what happens when you call your husband or wife, right after you get off the phone with the recruiter. You’ll be congratulated, but then your spouse will begin peppering you with questions that you can’t answer, can’t answer right now because the answers are too long, or can’t answer satisfactorily. Your spouse will try to end on a high note, but you’ll still feel dismayed or betrayed.

4. Restlessness: You’re finally back at your desk. You have projects to finish, documents to write, e-mails to send, but all you can do is sit with your fingers on your keyboard, thinking about how great it’s going to be when you tell your boss you’re leaving, or when you finally go. You can’t think about work because you’re thinking about what your goodbye party’s going to be like, what your cake will taste like, how great it will be to politely gloat that you’ve gotten out of this hellhole once and for all, and above all else, the excoriating remarks you’re going to make on your exit interview paperwork. Enjoy the jitters!

5. Serenity: After about an hour — maybe two, maybe the rest of the day — you will come to a place of comfort and calm. People will ask you for things and you’ll help them. You’ll go out of your way to be nice, opening doors or bringing people things from the printer. Because you know what they don’t: in two weeks, you’re out of here and onto something better.

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